February 05, 2020 Feature

Have I Heard That Before? Copyright’s Impact on Drawing Inspiration from Music’s Past

Michael W. Harris

©2020. Published in Landslide, Vol. 12, No. 3, January/February 2020, by the American Bar Association. Reproduced with permission. All rights reserved. This information or any portion thereof may not be copied or disseminated in any form or by any means or stored in an electronic database or retrieval system without the express written consent of the American Bar Association or the copyright holder.

In 2014, British singer-songwriter Sam Smith released the single “Stay with Me,” a ballad tune heavily influenced by American gospel music. It debuted at number one on the U.K. singles chart, would eventually hit number two on the Billboard charts, and would go on to win Record and Song of the Year at the 57th Annual Grammy Awards.

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